It was July 2014 andone of Africa’s most influential pastors, was holding a mega crusade at the Pascual Guerrero Olympic Stadium in Cali, Colombia. There were more people in the stadium watching him or listening to him than across the border at the Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil where Germany and Argentina were slugging it out to determine the 2014 FIFA World Cup Champion.
That this mega crusade was taking place in Colombia where many black men and women are often treated as criminals and drug pushers was a miracle in itself and a testament to the outside and global influence of the Nigerian-born but African-adopted preacher, prophet and healer.
Born in unusual circumstances in an impoverished village in Ondo State in Southwest Nigeria, Prophet T.B. Joshua who never attended college had a hard life as a child and youth.
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He did several menial jobs, including working at a poultry farm where he often recalls that the stench from the chickens often followed him home.
Then, as he often tells the story, a miracle happened and he was called by God with a clear message: To heal the sick, deliver the afflicted and expand the kingdom of God in Nigeria, Africa and the world.
His unconventional ways of doing things would attract disdain and attacks from fellow Nigerian preachers who could not understand how this unknown man was suddenly becoming an established name.
The Christian Association of Nigeria will not admit him to its folds and prominent Nigerian pastors would label him the son of Beelzebul or major demon.
However, even with attacks and denunciations, Prophet TB Joshua’s Synagogue Church of All Nations continued to expand beyond Lagos, Nigeria’s most populous city.
People began to troop in from across the world to listen to Prophet TB Joshua, be healed or be anointed by God through him.
His philanthropic activities would also endear him to the people, especially because he often extended desperately needed help to the most vulnerable in the society, not just in Nigeria, but across the world.
Today, Prophet TB Joshua, with his popular Emmanuel TV and YouTube channel, is one of the most watched African preachers.
The incidents in Colombia and Brazil were just another confirmation of how far Prophet TB Joshua has gone from his village in Arigidi, a town in Akoko North-West, Ondo State, Nigeria, to the global stage.
Prophet T.B. Joshua rarely comes to the United States, but sources are telling TODAY NEWS AFRICA, that a crusade in America may soon take place.